Has long been a teacher of English Literature, after the retirement focused on freelance copywriting. She’s now our full-time writer since our website allows her to know more about the hobby of her lifetime – sewing.
A professional fashion designer and seamstress. Isabel has her own video blog where she shares her experience about all the aspects of sewing – from choosing suitable materials to step-by-step instructions on how to sew a summer skirt.
Last updated: December 31, 2020
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Did you know that luxury yarn swifts in the 1800s were made from whale ivory? The inexpensive models, on the other hand, were wood, but the functionality was the same for all the models available. Nylon and plastic were unavailable at this type hence the limited choice of material. Although yarn swifts are not popular in the textile industry, knitters and people who crotchet have multiple uses for models in this category as they make their work easier.
You must know the features to assess if you want to buy the best yarn swift in the market. In this review, we focus on fundamental features to evaluate and rank seven of the best yarn swifts in the market. Type, size, weight, and material are the elements we pay attention to in our detailed reviews. We include a buying guide and FAQ section herein to help you and other buyers buy functional units.
Birchwood is one of the common materials that manufacturers use to make yarn swifts. This material is sturdy and durable, making it one of the best options to use for units in this family. This umbrella type unit is one of the best yarn swifts in the market that feature birch wood construction.
The ergonomic design and smooth finish make this unit ideal for an array of crotchet and knitting functions. Sanding makes the flawless finish, which prevents wood from sagging. The production process does not involve any chemicals making this the safest choice for home use.
Squeak free experience is possible with this unit, thanks to the easy and effortless rotation. It measures 28.34 x 24.8 inches while the weight is 1.32 lbs.
What we liked: The manufacturer uses birchwood in the construction of this unit, which guarantees longevity and sturdiness. The smooth finish and easy rotation are the other likable features.
What could be better: This unit is ideal for small skeins only.
Foldable yarn swifts make storage easier, and this Knit Picks Yarn Swift is among the models that you can fold. It is an umbrella type yarn swift measuring 23 x 3 x 3 inches. The overall mass for this unit is 1.46 lbs. It has an array of desirable qualities that make it a favorite among knitters.
Birchwood is the material that makes this unit. It is durable and strong; hence you are assured of long years of service when you buy this yarn swift. Metal hardware and plastic are the other material that this unit features. The metal parts are for longevity, while the plastic stopper prevents scratching of surfaces.
This unit has a natural finish that elevates its aesthetic value. Also, the smooth texture makes functionality a breeze. Setting up this unit is easy; hence beginners can use this model with ease.
What we liked: This yarn swift has a natural finish that makes it a beauty. It is also hardwearing and easy to assemble and use.
What could be better: The center pole has manufacturing defects that affect functionality.
Yarn by cuteDIY is one of the units in the market that feature a metal and plastic construction. Such models have a longer lifespan when compared to those made with other materials.
The metal and plastic that the manufacturer uses make this one of the lightweight models available in both virtual and land-based stores. The overall weight is 1.06 lbs. and you can carry it around in case you need to use it outside the home with ease. Additionally, the metal construction makes the fold of this unit compact than wooden ones.
Durability is a guarantee with this unit as the producer uses top quality materials. This unit, which measures 21 x 19 x 17 inches, can be set up both horizontal and vertically, giving you value for your money. Various adjustments are available, making this unit compatible with different workspaces except for rounded tables.
What we liked: The metal and plastic construction are one of the top features that we love with this yarn swift.
What could be better: This unit does not anchor well on rounded tables.
The Stanwood Needlecraft Wooden Umbrella Swift is a medium-sized unit measuring 23.5 x 3.25 x 3.25 inches. It weighs 1.98 lbs. and it holds skeins of up to six feet in circumference.
It comes with a clamp-on base that you can fit onto chairs, tables, or any other work surface of your preference. The edges it fits go up to 1 ¾ inch thick. Before placing an order for this yarn swift, it is best to measure the work surface to determine if this unit will be the best fit.
The birchwood they use for the construction is of premium quality, and the artistry is top-tier. This assures the durability of the unit as well as sturdiness when in use. Extra fine sanding is used to make the wood smooth eliminating the need for chemical vanishes. The wood pieces they use are free of scars and blemishes to prevent breakage of the yarn and give the unit an appealing look.
What we liked: This yarn swift is premium quality and spins smoothly, making it an ideal gift for both beginner and seasoned knitters.
What could be better: This unit has some design flaws that upset normal functioning.
This unit features a tabletop design that is simple and makes usage easy. The Stanwood Needlecraft Tabletop Yarn Swift is easy to assemble. Storage for this unit is easier as it features a compact design with pieces that come apart.
If you are looking for a versatile unit that is adjustable for different skeins, then this model is a perfect choice. Moving the pegs allows the measurements to be adjusted from two and a half to six feet.
The overall dimensions for this Amish style yarn swift are 25 x 1 x 5 inches, while the weight is 1.8 lbs. The unit comes with for non-slip pads that hold it firmly to the table, allowing one to work without the worry of ruining the work in progress.
The producer uses solid wood for the construction of this unit with a smooth finish to ensure that it does not snag the yarn.
What we liked: The Amish minimalist style, smooth finish, and easy storage are some of the features we like for this model.
What could be better: Tends to slide during winding.
Yarn Swift by Yarniss Store is made with natural birch wood, which is strong, guaranteeing a longer lifespan for this product. It is an umbrella type yarn swift with a smooth finish and joints tied by hemp rope, which is robust and holds the piece together effortlessly.
This unit is one of the few in the market that comes with a replacement screw availing an alternative for when the one attached to the unit fails or gets lost. Setup for this unit is easy, and the adjustable clamp allows one to use an array of work surfaces, including tables, chairs, and benches, among others.
The package you receive contains instructions on using this unit, making one of the top choices that beginners should consider. This unit has a smooth and squeak-free rotation, which makes winding yarn faster and easier.
What we liked: The yarn swift comes with a set of instructions guiding one on proper usage. Smooth rotation and a sturdy base are the other sought-after features.
What could be better: The slats on this unit are flimsy.
Nagina International’s Yarn Swift has an assortment of desirable features that make it a favorite among the target demographic. It comes with a heavy maple base that keeps the swift in place while preventing any drags.
The overall dimensions for the unit are 12.5 x 6.5 x 6.5 inches, and the weight is 1.1 lbs. Nagina International uses rosewood to construct the yarn swift. This variety of wood is rot-resistant, resilient, and visually appealing. The combination of rosewood and maple makes this unit both an aesthetic piece as well as functional.
The design for this unit does not require clamping on a work surface; thus, one can use this unit away from home with ease. The manufacturer’s customer service team is professional and responsive. One can get the help they need when they get stuck during setup or use.
What we liked: We like that this unit combines the good qualities of maple and rosewood to ensure that the swift is sturdy and long-lasting.
What could be better: The base spins.
Things to Сonsider
Buying a yarn swift requires understanding how the units that fit in this category work to get the best. There are different types of swifts available in the market today, making it hard, especially for beginners, to pick a unit that is suitable for their needs. Understanding the key features is the first step towards getting the best yarn swift. In our buying guide, we identify and discuss the fundamental elements that one cannot overlook when buying any variation of swifts available. We also answer a few questions at the end of the buying guide to address concerns that buyers may have. Read through to the end and know more about yarn swifts.
Why do you need a yarn swift?
Yarn swifts available in the market are an essential took for knitters and those who crotchet. They help wind skeins of yarn into a ball without knots or loops to make the knitting experience a breeze. There are other methods that one can use to wind the yarn, but they may not be as effective as using a swift. Here are some of the top reasons why you need a yarn swift if you knit or crotchet.
Makes the process easier
The other techniques available for winding yarn into a ball are tiresome. Having a swift make work easier as the units hold the yarn and rotate smoothly, the process painless. The type of swift you buy determines the process and the complexity of the same. For this reason, you need to know each of the options present in the market work before buying one. Umbrella and tabletop are the common types of yarn swifts that one will get when looking for one.
You can choose to wind the skein into a ball using your hands, but this will take more time than when using a yarn swift. Once you understand how the swift you buy operates, it is easier to convert the skein into a ball, and you save a lot of time in the process. Swifts have faster rotations than the human hand; therefore, it takes lesser time to wind the yarn into a ball. Additionally, you will make fewer errors when using the yarn swift, reducing the winding time considerably.
There are fewer tangles and knots when using yarn swifts, resulting in neater balls or cakes of yarn. Proper usage of the equipment makes the process faster, easier, and fulfilling.
Features to consider before you buy a yarn swift
There are many features that one must bear in mind when buying a yarn swift. The purpose of the unit will dictate the best option for you to buy. Here are the top elements that you must consider before buying any of the yarn swifts available in stores.
Yarn swifts feature different designs, each with unique properties that set them apart. Units with the same features fall into the same category. Umbrella and tabletop are the common types of yarn swifts that you will come across as you shop. A combination between the umbrella and Amish (tabletop) is the other option available.
Functionality differs for the types present in the market, and this is the top factor to remember when choosing a swift.
The Stanwood Needlecraft Wooden Umbrella Swift is one of the umbrella style variations you will find in stores. It is easy to set up and use. It also has a host of desirable features that you may be looking for in a swift. For beginners, it is best to choose a swift with easy installation and use.
Manufacturers bring different swift sizes to the market, just like yarn loops vary. The size affects the functions of these devices, and getting the right size is vital for a seamless experience. Also, you must think about the workspace that you have and the available area for setting up the swift. Small-sized swifts are ideal for tight spaces and those who intend to use the unit while on transit. Bigger swifts are best suited for large projects, and they also need ample space for placement. Not all units have a standard size. For instance, the Stanwood Needlecraft Tabletop Yarn Swift is an adjustable unit that you can use for different sizes of yarn.
The size you pick must be compatible with the project at hand. If you are stuck on the best size to pick, it is prudent to go with the adjustable ones.
The weight of the yarn swift controls the usage and whether one can move around with the unit they buy or not. Most of the swifts with basic features only tend to be lighter than those with additional elements. Units with extra features are a better choice as you enjoy more benefits getting value for the money you pay. Working with a heavy unit may be cumbersome in the long run, especially for big projects; hence, lightweight models such as the Yarn by cuteDIY ought to be on the top of the list. On the other hand, units that weigh less may have stability issues, especially the tabletop swifts. Units that weigh more may not be ideal for use while on transit, as carrying it around will be tiresome.
The material the manufacturer uses for the various parts is a factor that you cannot assume. The use of top-notch materials is essential for yarn swifts to ensure that the units last long. Wood, plastic, and metal are some of the standard materials they use to make yarn swifts. A smooth finish is necessary to prevent sagging or pulling of yarn, which will ruin the hook causing loops or breakages. For wood, birch is one of the top picks for manufacturers. Some units are solid wood, as is the case with Stanwood Needlecraft Tabletop Yarn Swift, but it is not common. More units feature birch wood construction, such as the Yarn Swift by Yarniss Store and others discussed above.
No, it is not difficult to assemble a yarn swift. Most of the units present in the market have a straightforward assembly that takes a few minutes. This is not to say that all units are easy to set up. Some of the models available in the market have complex setups and may take a bit more time to get the unit ready for use. Luckily, manufacturers provide instructions to guide users on how to set up the units they produce. Sticking to the steps available in the manual makes the process a sail through, and the assembly will take lesser time. Contacting the customer support when you face any challenges with assembly is advisable to avoid causing damage to the swift.
The market is flooded with different types of yarn swift, and usage for the various units in the market is not the same. The kind yarn swift you buy will determine how to use it. However, the steps necessary to use a yarn spin are similar for the different models available. The first thing that you must do is assemble the yarn swift in readiness for use. After the unit is fixed firmly on the work surface, it is time to untwist the hank to get the yarn into a circular shape. Carefully place the yarn on the swift and open it until the tension is right for winding. Once you achieve the correct tightness, you can cut the ties that hold the yarn together and secure one of the ends to the swift and use the other to start turning the yarn into a ball or cake.
All the yarn swifts we review are among the best in the market. The products are from reputable brands in this industry, and they have desirable features that set them apart from the others in this selection. Our editor’s choice from the seven brands that we discuss is the She-Lin Wooden Umbrella Swift Yarn Winder. It is a durable unit that features top-notch construction and premium quality birch wood material.
The Knit Picks Yarn Swift is the 2nd best unit in our list of the best yarn swifts and our premium pick herein. It is easy to assemble and comes with a natural finish that elevates its aesthetic value significantly. Our best value pick is the Yarn by cuteDIY. This unit stands out from the rest because of the plastic and metal construction, making it lighter than the wooden models. It is an inexpensive model that is hardwearing and easy to store.